ARTIST

Squeak Carnwath

b. 1947

Born in Abington, Pennsylvania; lives in Oakland, California.

Squeak Carnwath uses art as a discovery process. She doesn’t plan her images in advance and says that “art-making is a kind of self-making...finding out who we are, where we are, and how we are oriented in the universe.” For Carnwath, imagination is the mind’s freedom. Layers of paint or ink represent the body and skin; the scratching and random marks reveal our imperfections. Combining text and imagery, Carnwath's work is like a diary more than it is narrative, drawing everyday images and making notations in her distinctive script. Her words carry compositional and diagrammatical weight as much as they do meaning. Certainly they do provide windows into her life, in which nostalgia and questions of mortality make frequent appearances. In her Tamarind lithograph, Reasons, she reveals the important things in her day. It might make us think about how ordinary, everyday objects in combination create larger significance.

Squeak, a childhood name that stuck, spent two weeks in residence at Tamarind, drawing on stones and plates and working with the printers to find the perfect ink colors and papers. Squeak's two airedales, Henri and Matisse, accompanied her and also became part of the family, even protecting us when strangers arrived. 

 

 

Squeak—a childhood name that stuck—spent two weeks in residence at Tamarind, drawing on stones and plates and working with the printers to find perfect ink colors and paper. As it is an intimate working situation, we all get to know each other well and the artists become part of our small family. Squeak’s two airedales, named Henri and Matisse, accompanied her when she came to Tamarind, so they too became part of our family. We loved having Henri and Matisse in our midst—that is until they decided to protect us from strangers, and our clients were met with a bit of barking and growling. 

 

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